Carlisle

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Carlisle is a located within beautiful region which marks the border between Scotland and England. It is a city which serves not only the majority of the county of Cumbria as its commercial, industrial and retail heart but also much of Southern Scotland.

The Carlisle that you see today owes its existence very much to the Romans, who settled here in order to be able to provide services to the forts which were stationed along Hadrian’s Wall. It was much later, during the twelfth century that the King gave permission for a religious establishment to be founded here and the priory was built, which is now the city’s cathedral. As you make your way around Carlisle you will be able to see evidence of the different eras which have made their mark here in the buildings, street names and businesses that call Carlisle home.

Photo by Ray Forster
Photo by Ray Forster

Points of Interest

For nine hundred years the castle has stood guard over the city. Though its protection is no longer required it is home to the Border Regiment Museum, and charts the military history of the city. You will still find the occasional steam locomotive pulling in and out of the station too as special charter trains make their way along the seventy two miles of the famous Settle to Carlisle railway line. There is much history to discover, both of the bloody battles that were waged in the Border country over the centuries and of the people that lived and worked here, and there are plenty of opportunities to learn about life through the ages in Carlisle. There are a number of guided tours in operation that can take you on a trip around the city which will show you all of the major points of interest and explain their origins, from the Citadel at Bothergate to the influence on the town brought by the advent of steam and the creation of the railway.

Things to See and Do

Every August sees the city play host to the Carlisle Great Fair, an event that has been taking place since 1353. The event has changed and developed much over the centuries and it currently described as being similar to the Edinburgh Festival in feel and content. Carlisle Castle is well worth a visit; this is one of the sites where Mary Queen of Scots was held captive in 1568. It is a castle that has witnessed much bloodshed in the nine centuries it has been standing watch over the city. Entry into the castle also covers the entry into the King’s Own Royal Border Regiment Museum which is housed within the castle. More of the history of Carlisle and the surrounding area can be found at the Tullie House Museum. There are lots of interactive and hands on exhibits which trace the history of the region from the days of the Celts through to more modern times. The cathedral is a popular attraction with visitors to the city, it is believed to have one of the biggest Gothic windows of any religious building in the whole of England.

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